We are introducing one of the most asked for features: stopping instances.

With the new stop feature, you can conveniently stop an instance after you have finished your current task to stop the billing as an active instance.

When you want to continue working on that instance, just conveniently start the instance again and continue where you left off.

In the past, this workflow was only possible by using snapshots.

The Stop and Start Feature

To stop an instance you can either use the "Stop" action, as shown below, or via the public API.

Please note:  stopping an instance shuts down the instance and ends all running processes.

After a few seconds, the status of the instance will change to STOPPED, as shown below. 

Once the instance is stopped billing for the instance will stop. 

Stopped instances only consume storage space which is not yet billed for during the beta phase.

Please note: In the future, we might introduce (after a prior announcement), a low charge for the storage usage of stopped instances.

To start a stopped instance again simply use the start action, as shown below, or via the public API.

Security Groups and Volumes of Stopped Instances

When you stop and restart an instance it will have the same security groups and volumes attached as before.

This means security groups and volumes associated with stopped instances are considered as in-use and can not be deleted.

However, just like with active instance, you can detach volumes or security groups from a stopped instance. 

Current Limitations:

- Only new instances can be stopped, see the legacy section below.

- IP addresses of the instance will change after being stopped and restarted

- SHUTOFF instances are not STOPPED, i.e. they still count as active instances for your billing. Hence we discourage trying to shut down the instance via a system command but recommend using the UI or public API to stop the instance.

Legacy Label

If you have any older instances running, you will notice the LEGACY label on them, as shown below. 

Instances with the legacy label were created before we introduced a technical change in our infrastructure that is needed to support the stop instance feature.

Unfortunately, this means these instances can not be stopped and restarted. 

However, if you snapshot and recreate these instances, the new instances will be able to use the stop instance feature.

Please don't forget to delete any outdated/unneeded snapshots!